Aaron Neville Visits The GRAMMY Museum

GRAMMY-winning R&B artist discusses his new doo-wop album, My True Story, and how the genre shaped his musical livelihood
  • Photo: Imeh Akpanudosen/Getty Images
    Aaron Neville performs at the GRAMMY Museum
  • Photo: Imeh Akpanudosen/Getty Images
    Aaron Neville speaks at the GRAMMY Museum
March 11, 2013 -- 4:38 pm PDT

GRAMMY-winning R&B artist Aaron Neville recently participated in an installment of the GRAMMY Museum's An Evening With series. Before an intimate audience at the Museum's Clive Davis Theater, Neville discussed his love for doo-wop and collaborating with GRAMMY winners Keith Richards and Don Was on his new doo-wop album, My True Story. Neville also performed doo-wop hits such as the Flamingos' "A Kiss From Your Lips," the Spaniels' "Goodnight, Sweetheart, Goodnight" and the Drifters' "This Magic Moment."

"Back in those days the voices were synthesizers. They were like the main focus," said Neville. "[The voices] would go through your blood stream. … Sometimes I think the teacher thought I had ADD because I wasn't paying attention. I had a song in my head. … I had to sing at least five songs that I probably heard when I was 10 years old."

Neville's musical journey began in his hometown of New Orleans, where he recorded his first hit, 1966's "Tell It Like It Is," which peaked at No. 2 on the Billboard Hot 100. His catalog of hits also includes 1989's "Don't Know Much" and 1991's "Everybody Plays The Fool," both of which peaked in the Top 10. "Don’t Know Much," a duet with Linda Ronstadt, earned Neville a GRAMMY for Best Pop Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocal. Neville recorded a string of albums with his four brothers as the Neville Brothers, including 1989's Yellow Moon. The album features "Healing Chant," which earned a GRAMMY for Best Pop Instrumental Performance. Neville won additional GRAMMYs for Best Pop Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocal in 1990 for "All My Life" with Ronstadt, and in 1994 for Best Country Vocal Collaboration for "I Fall To Pieces" with Trisha Yearwood.

Released in January, My True Story debuted at No. 7 on Billboard's R&B Albums chart, marking the highest-charting album of Neville's career. Co-produced by Richards and Was, the album features 12 doo-wop standards such as "This Magic Moment," Al Lewis' "Tears On My Pillow" and Curtis Mayfield's "Gypsy Woman." Neville is scheduled to begin a U.S. tour in April with dates scheduled through June.

Upcoming GRAMMY Museum events include An Evening With Verdine White Of Earth, Wind & Fire (March 27), Reel To Reel: Downloaded (April 1), An Evening With Howard Kaylan (April 2), An Evening With Noel Paul Stookey (April 4), and An Evening With Hal Willner (April 10).


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